Sunday, August 22, 2010

It's week #4 in August, and our target item is....a Sewing Kit

(Image courtesy of the

"I sometimes wish every girl had access to a sewing
machine and training in how to use it."
(Gordon B Hinckley, "Stay on the High Road", 2004)

I happened to be in attendance in the Conference Center when he spoke these words to the Young Women of the Church during the Young Women's broadcast.  I was with my daughter, who had previously and patiently allowed me to show her how to sew some basic articles.  I was glad I had taught both of my daughters how to sew.  My motto was "When you leave here, you will know how to sew.  Whether you use it or not, that is up to you".  My oldest married daughter has used her sewing skills for upholstery and curtains.  The youngest (also married) daughter has used her sewing skills for quilting with friends.

In The Latter-day Saint Woman: Basic Manual for Women, Part A; Home Production Lesson on Self Reliance, it states the following.....

We should learn to sew and mend our own clothing. To be prepared for a time of need, we should also learn how to remake old clothing. It is a good idea to store materials for making clothing in case none are available. We can learn to make many items in addition to clothing: bedding, window and floor coverings, towels, tablecloths, and furniture upholstery or coverings. We can also learn other skills such as weaving, quilting, knitting, crocheting, and other needlecrafts. All of these can beautify our clothing and homes.   

So, let's see what you should consider putting into your basic sewing kit:

Pins:  Straight Pins, Safety Pins, and Quilting Pins.

Scissors:  I have fabric shears and two sets of smaller sheers for embroidery etc.
Measuring Tape:  To determine hems, and to obtain body measurements to determine the correct sized pattern you may need.
Needles:  Sewing Machine needs from delicate to heavy fabrics.  I even have a winged needle (middle-top item) to use when I want to pierce the edges of fabric for baby blankets.  I use it to help me embroider around them.  And finally hand needs for small embroidery all the way up to upholstery needles.
I have Needle Threaders (red), and samples of embroidery floss and spools of thread.  I do not store all of my thread and floss in my sewing kit, just a few samples.
The Rotary cutter is used for quilting. The bottle of "Fray no more" is very helpful.  Put a drop on a fraying thread on a garment or on the end of a seam to keep it from coming apart.  Finally, in recently years I have had to add a Magnifying glass.....
I have different types of elastic for sewing projects or repairing garments.
Include an assortment of buttons for all types of garments.
I keep Velcro because you never know when you will need a piece.  Also, I keep a roll of "Stitch-Witchery" which fuses two pieces of fabric together with a hot iron.  When you are in a hurry and need to fix a hem quickly, this is a great option to have.  I have also included a marking pencil, a crochet hook (and I have others), and finally a gadget that helps me make Bias Tape.
I also have included "Hook and Eyes", a Thimble, and a Seam ripper.  The Seam Ripper helps you take part seams without harming the fabric.
I place it all in my basket.
Include the top tray.
....and house it in this well worn sewing basket that I received as a gift years ago. 
This is my home sewing kit.  We will talk more about other kits for 72-hour kits, your purse, etc later in the week.
Happy Sewing!

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